2022 AFCON Qualifiers: Osimhen, Etebo return against Sierra Leone

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DESPITE promising to include some home-based players in the 2022 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) Qualifiers against Sierra Leone, Coach Gernot Rohr has listed 21 foreign-based players for the doubles tie against the Leone Stars.

After the friendly against Algeria and Tunisia, Rohr promised to include some home-based players in the team but instead the coach has included the duo of Victor Osimhen and Oghenekaro Etebo in the 21-man squad released yesterday ahead of the tie next month.

The German tactician called up Captain Ahmed Musa, defender William Ekong, and 17 others for the quick-fire double against the Leone Stars of Sierra Leone.

Defenders Kenneth Omeruo, Leon Balogun and Chidozie Awaziem, midfielder Alex Iwobi and forwards Moses Simon, Samuel Chukwueze and Chidera Ejuke are also called.

Nigeria’s leading marksman in the series, Osimhen returns after missing out of this month’s friendlies against Algeria and Tunisia, just as midfielder Joe Aribo and South Africa –based goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi returned.

Switzerland –based goalkeeper Sebastian Osigwe will hope to earn his first cap for Nigeria, while defenders Kevin Akpoguma and Zaidu Sanusi, who impressed in the friendlies in Austria, have been handed opportunities to add to their caps.

There are seven players on standby, including defender Abdullahi Shehu, goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, midfielders Ramon Azeez and Samson Tijani, and forward Paul Onuachu.

The Super Eagles take on the Leone Stars at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City on Friday, 13th November before flying to Freetown for the return game on Tuesday, 17th November at the Siaka Stevens Stadium.

The players are expected to report at the Protea Hotel Emotan in Benin City on Monday, November 9.

Victory in both encounters will guarantee Nigeria a slot at the 2022 AFCON finals holding in Cameroon

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